A Chinese political prisoner jailed after he openly supported the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong passed away at the age of 48, despite warnings from his family that abuse and torture could happen at the hands of the prison manager and the police could kill him.
Guo Hongwei, who is serving a 13-year prison sentence in northeastern China’s Jilin province, was taken to the hospital for cerebral hemorrhage after his family repeatedly warned that his high blood pressure did not Get treated, Hong Kong Apple Daily newspaper reported on Monday.
A person familiar with the matter told RFA last week that Guo was tortured.
“Guo Hongwei was tortured by the authorities for a long time while in Songyuan Prison,” the person said.
They said, “He was locked up in a two-square-meter (6.5 feet) cell; a small, dark room, with no toilet, no light and no ventilation system.”
“He had high blood pressure when he went in, so the chances of surviving in such an environment are not good.”
The surgeon removed a “large piece of bone” from Guo’s artery, which blocks blood supply to the brain, he said.
Guo was jailed in 2016 by a court in Siping City of Jilin for “extortion” and “arguing and disrupting”, an allegation commonly used to target peaceful critics of the Party. The Chinese Communist (CCP) is in power.
His family vowed to uncover the truth, after Guo was taken to the hospital in early April, undergoing two surgeries before falling into a coma.
His father, Guo Yinqi, told RFA above April 6, after Guo Hongwei fell ill, but before he died, it took a “miracle” for him to live.
“Guo Hongwei was utterly emaciated, to the point where he had very few ribs and spine,” said Guo Yinqi. “He can’t breathe on his own and depends on the ventilator.”
“His signs of survival are weak, but we’re hoping for a miracle.”
Complications of blood pressure
Guo Hongwei’s brother Guo Hongqiang said Guo was able to speak normally on the phone two months ago, but was unable to speak. April 4.
“His blood pressure is quite high,” said Guo Hongqiang. “I wonder about what they did to him in prison.”
“We don’t know. I guess something happened to trigger this.”
A source close to Guo Hongwei’s family told RFA in December 2019 that his blood pressure was between 240-250 systolic above 160-170 diastolic, and that he was not given an alternative to the medication provided in the prison clinic for which he was allergic.
Guo’s father also said at the time, Guo Hongwei was being held in solitary confinement in a small space, and that his food and water ration was inadequate, while the source said that his wheelchair was damaged. his love is destroyed and his glasses are broken.
Guo Yinqi said he believes the authorities are trying to make him “confess” to the charges against him, and will likely “bully him to death” if he doesn’t.
A former power plant worker from Songjianghe town of Jilin, Guo Hongwei was subjected to physical attacks that left him unable to walk after he became the petitioner after a failed lawsuit.
He was initially jailed in 2005 after filing a formal complaint against several local officials on embezzlement charges, along with the same charges against him.
After he was released, he held a public rally in support of the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong, after which he was detained again. March 2015, later convicted in 2016.
Guo Hongwei’s mother, Xiao Yunling, was detained at the same time as her son and released in early 2019.
His younger sister Guo Hongying was also sentenced to 5 and a half years in prison for “quarreling and disrupting” and “obstructing officials in the course of carrying out her duties.”
Gao Feng’s Report to RFA’s Mandarin Service. Translated and edited by Luisetta Mudie.